Philadelphia Eagles News

Practice Notes: Who Shined On Tuesday?

Fran Duffy and Chris McPherson recap Tuesday's Organized Team Activity session at the NovaCare Complex.

1. Mike Wallace brought the juice in the huddle to kick off practice. "I've always had good vibes. That's why my teammates always love me. I always have good energy. That's my main thing. I don't want to bring bad vibes, bad energy. I just want to be happy and have fun with my teammates. That's how you start it off. Everybody has their handshakes already, so I'm going to go home and think of some things in the huddle so I can have a handshake. I feel left out. I get the regular high-five right now, but soon enough we'll have some good ones." - CM

2. The first play from scrimmage I witnessed was a touchdown pass from Nick Foles to Richard Rodgers down the right sideline. It was a beautifully thrown vertical route right over the shoulder for a score down in the high red zone. Foles followed that up with another throw to Zach Ertz for what would've been a touchdown on a slant route down near the goal line, a route we saw the Pro Bowl tight end hit on numerous times last year for a score. - FD

3. To follow up on Fran's last post, Ertz was dominant throughout the session. He was covered tightly at the goal line in a 7-on-7 red zone drill by cornerback Ronald Darby and still came away with the ball. - CM

4. Wide receiver Nelson Agholor not only was looking crisp running routes but was catching the ball firmly with his hands away from his body. On one rep against Darby, in particular, the cornerback was in prime position to break up the pass, but Agholor snagged the ball and made it a point to keep it away from No. 21. - CM

5. Cornerback Rasul Douglas was opportunistic when a pass was batted into the air by wide receiver Rashard Davis. The second-year player leaped up for the jump ball to snare the interception. Later on, in a team drill, Douglas was enjoying the opportunity to cover the team's top draft pick Dallas Goedert. Douglas might be the type of player who can thrive as athletic tight ends become more involved in NFL offenses. - CM

6. The defense came out, and this was the first I got to see of Nate Sudfeld this spring, and he looked sharp. The offense registered a false start, so they were behind the sticks to get things started, but Sudfeld responded by throwing a touchdown to second-year receiver Shelton Gibson (who had a bad drop earlier in the day). - FD

7. Two corners specifically stood out to me in this period. Early on, Ronald Darby blanketed Mike Wallace in the end zone, forcing Sudfeld to eat a throw. Shortly afterward, Sidney Jones roped in a diving interception in the back of the end zone on a play where Sudfeld rolled to his right. It was an athletic play by the second-year corner. - FD

8. Rookie Avonte Maddox has to get used to quarterbacks testing his 5-9 frame. Sudfeld threw a pass deep down the right side to the goal line intended for 6-3 receiver Anthony Mahoungou. Maddox, to his credit, boxed out Mahoungou to keep the wideout from coming up with the ball. - CM

9. Jordan Mailata's calves are gigantic. He's a LARGE human being amongst large human beings. - FD

10. The squad split up into two sets of half-field 7-on-7 drills. I stuck with one side while C-Mac stuck on the other. Here were the takeaways:

  • Greg Ward ran a razor-sharp stop route on the first play, snaring a reception against rookie corner Chandon Sullivan, who fell to the ground on the play and left briefly with an injury. The undrafted rookie from Georgia State would return later in the period to get a pass breakup against Shelton Gibson.
  • Richard Rodgers caught a pass from Carson Wentz on a dig route over the middle of the field. It was one of a couple of catches in the deep or intermediate area for the former Green Bay Packer.
  • Dallas Goedert started to shine in this period. The rookie beat Jeremy Reaves early on and followed that up with an impressive grab against fellow first-year player Stephen Roberts. 
  • Jalen Mills, who was his usual feisty self throughout the afternoon, posted an emphatic pass breakup in a matchup against Ward. 
  • Second-year running back Donnel Pumphrey ran an awesome Texas route in the middle of the field against rookie Asante Brown for what would have been a significant gain.

11. My one note on Pumphrey was on the final rep in team drills, he caught a dump-off pass and to make a point ran into safety Tre Sullivan instead of just easing up to end the play. - CM

12. The team got back together for full-squad action, and Derek Barnett popped up early on, getting a would-be sack off a play-action throw. The second-year pass rusher looked impressive today from everything I saw. - FD

13. Kamu Grugier-Hill exploded downhill on a perimeter run for what would have been a tackle for loss. When he cuts it loose his athleticism is something to see – pound for pound he's one of the most athletic guys on the team in my eyes. - FD

14. A red zone 7-on-7 period ended with a Greg Ward touchdown in the back left corner of the end zone on a touch pass from quarterback Joe Callahan, his best pass of the day that I saw. - FD

15. The offense flipped the field after the Ward touchdown catch with Sudfeld in control. First, he hit Dallas Goedert on a crossing route down the field on a pass slightly behind the rookie that he was able to contort his body to make the grab. Sudfeld marched the offense down the field, hitting Nelson Agholor short of the goal line before making the throw of the day on a touchdown pass to Rashard Davis. The defense objected whether both of Davis' feet were down, but the fact remains that it was an outstanding throw from the third-year quarterback, who put it up over the linebacker right on the money to Davis. - FD

16. Three corners made impressive plays in the final few series of practice. First, Rasul Douglas undercut a throw intended for Goedert to secure a pass breakup; it was a good read by the second-year corner. Jalen Mills engulfed Mack Hollins in coverage for a contested incomplete pass. DeVaunte Bausby, who was the receiver of some praise from Jim Schwartz on Tuesday morning, got an impressive pass breakup in the middle of the field on a pass thrown by Nick Foles. Bausby saw time with the first-team nickel defense in Tuesday's session. - FD

17. The Eagles used Nathan Gerry and Kamu Grugier-Hill as the first-team linebackers in the nickel package on Tuesday. This is merely for evaluation purposes. Fran already noted Grugier-Hill's athleticism. I like Gerry's play-recognition skills. In fact, Nigel Bradham said after practice that Gerry's knowledge of the defense is right up there with the veterans in the locker room. - CM

18. A young player who received a lot of reps - defensive end Joe Ostman, the rookie free agent out of Central Michigan. - CM

Get a glimpse at the Eagles' OTA practice from May 29, 2018.

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